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Wildlife Law in the Southern African Development Community








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    Wildlife Law in the Southern African Development Community 2010
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    There is a wide variety of interests to be balanced in wildlife management. These interests range from the conservation of biodiversity and specific endangered species and their habitats, to control of human-wildlife conflicts, the creation of valuable opportunities in eco-tourism or hunting tourism in response to the needs and respect of the traditions of local populations depending on hunting and other wildlife uses. As a consequence, the enactment of effective legal frameworks for sustainable wildlife management, which are able to contribute to poverty reduction and food security and at the same time protect wild animals, is a challenging task.
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    Wildlife law and the legal empowerment of the poor in Sub-Saharan Africa 2009
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    There is a wide variety of interests to be balanced in wildlife management. These interests range from the conservation of biodiversity and specific endangered species and their habitats, to valuable opportunities in eco-tourism or hunting tourism, to the needs and traditions of the local population relating to hunting and collection of animals or their products. In the case of rural communities in some parts of the world, especially where alternative sources of food and revenue are scarce, the impact of inadequate wildlife management which can result in decreased availability of bushmeat or cash or in exacerbated human-wildlife conflicts, may endanger the survival of wild animal species. However, this may be difficult to assess precisely, as based on existing literature, the actual degree of dependence of people on wildlife resources varies greatly. In any case, it is evident that the contribution of sustainable wildlife management to the reduction of poverty and food security, suppor ted by appropriate legal frameworks, is essential. Nevertheless, enacting effective legal reforms in the area of wildlife management is challenging.
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    Wildlife law and the legal empowerment of the poor in Sub-Saharan Africa: new case studies 2009
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    This is the second legal study focusing on wildlife legislation and the empowerment of the poor in Sub-Saharan Africa. It follows up on FAO Legal Paper Online 77 “Wildlife law and the legal empowerment of the poor in Sub-Saharan Africa” that was published in May 2009 (www.fao.org/Legal/prs-ol/lpo75.pdf).1 The purpose of this second paper is to analyze wildlife legislation in an additional fifteen African countries, and assess how similar issues (such as wildlife tenure, community-based wildlife management, benefit-sharing, public participation in decision-making and law enforcement, and human-wildlife conflicts) have been addressed. The lens through which available legislation has been analyzed is the concept of “legal empowerment of the poor,” as developed by the Commission on Legal Empowerment of the Poor, established under the aegis of the United Nations between 2005 and 2008.2 Accordingly, national legal frameworks were examined in their potential to support the objective of effect ive regulation of wildlife management to promote environmental sustainability and socio-economic development with a view to allowing all members of society, and particularly disadvantaged people, to directly benefit from sustainable wildlife management. Thus, the study sought to evaluate whether wildlife legislation can significantly contribute to improving food security, alleviating poverty and enhancing rural livelihoods, by fulfilling international obligations and following best practices rel ated to the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity.

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